12 of 21
Secret, UK. "This is from a session back in the winter. A big raucous westerly swell, and the winds to match it, meant that some shelter was the only option for a wave. This fickle cove has the potential for some big hollow lumps, but the direction wasn't quite right so things were pretty chaotic in there. Throw in some heavy rain and it wasn't ideal for photos. Luckily the elements all aligned for this shot, the skies cleared for five minutes, this set rolled in at the perfect angle for the low tide bank and Jobe Harris happened to be in the right spot to take full advantage of this beauty, one of the best rights I saw all winter!" © 2013 Andy Ford
Casino Pier, New Jersey © 2013 Ben Currie
Padang Padang, Bali. "One year ago I shot Padang, the lineup was packed with photographers and the vibe was bad. 12 months later, the lineup was still packed, but the vibe proved me wrong. It's possible to shoot with a lot of guys and have a good time. Thank you Trevor Murphy, Rafa Ramos, Junior Enomoto, Dobby, Ricardo Estevez, and all the others I don't know the names of, for such a great day."© 2013 diogodorey
Desert Point, Lombok. "I took this amazing view from the cliffs above when there was a huge swell."© 2013 Shogo
Cloudbreak, Fiji. "That swell was really messy as the winds were stiff from the south which puts a strange cross-offshore wind on the face. The swell was shifty about 4-6 feet but nobody was finding any gems. Our boat had spent the morning at Restaurants surfing small but clean conditions and headed to Cloudbreak to check it out before heading home for the day. I saw JJ attempt a couple of double ups and just get bounced on the chop and drilled. Right before we spun the boat to leave I saw JJ paddle for a wedgy one and I grabbed the camera just in time to rattle off about 10 shots. The photo makes it look pretty fun, but it was tricky! I don't think anyone else was getting pitted like this that day!"© 2013 Stuart Johnson
Near Whangamata, New Zealand. This day was at a kinda secret spot up the coast. It only breaks maybe three times a year as it has to be giant to get into this sheltered bay. 4-5 metres on the exposed coast and it will be 2-4ft here. It breaks really close to the shore and is always hollow when it breaks.© 2013 Digga
South Narrabeen, News South Wales.I was actually a bit out of position for this. The captain had just paddled past me and was about 30m away when he suddenly turned and went. I was caught off guard, and almost underneath him , but he picked a sick line and I was able to get a few shots off, this being the last of the sequence. I would like to say I was trying for this shot, but it's just the way the water parted around my big Aquatech dome port, and the 10mm fish eye managed to squeeze it all in. The captain does the swell report for Coastalwatch on the Northern Beaches and is a full hellman in his spare time, paddling and towing his way round Longy with Matty and TC. So it's good to finally get a good shot of his mug.
Rocky Point, Oahu. I woke up this morning and could hear the sets coming in from my bed. The swell arrived the night before and was already here. I sent the word over and we were ready before sunrise. We arrived at Rockies to find light winds and grinding lefts. This shot is of talented surfer, Brian Pollak, hacking out his first wave of the morning. Shot at 6:25am in the good morning light with my trusty 50mm.© 2013 Doug Falter
Chickens, Maldives. After a perfect sunrise session at Jails, the wind started blowing NW. "Perfect for Chickens!" I said during breakfast. Swell was head high to overhead and we decided to leave for the left hander at noon. We arrived with a bright sun over our heads, one guy in the water. Sets were overhead, wind was perfectly offshore, and after an hour the waves started to grow. Solid sets reached the reef and some crew from a safari boat joined us on the break. The barrels couldn't pass through empty, a few of the guys will always fit perfectly in those green rooms. As if it was a sinful action to let the barrels roll empty under that beautiful blue sky. Simply another perfect day in the Maldives.
Waimea Bay, Oahu. This was shot from the side of the road at Waimea Bay. Biggest swell of last year. This shot was taken on Dec 30 and the swell was 25ft at 18 seconds, or something ridiculous like that. No one was trying to surf the shorebreak because there was way too much power out there that day. The outside was barreling top to bottom, classic big Waimea with people on 11ft guns. The picture was taken around 3pm with the sun shining right through the barrel.© 2013 ThisIsDaniel
Jailbreaks, Maldives. Alarm clock set at five am. The night was windy and rainy, but my guests and I took the risk, knowing that the swell was probably still going to be pumping. We arrive at the break, after a five minute walk, with the sun still to rise completely. Perfect off shore wind, clear sky and clean overhead waves, with bigger sets peeling in front of us and magical contrasts of light. No one on the line up. One hour for ourselves and the other two hours spent in the water sharing the moment with other five surfers. No doubt one of the best ways to start a day. "
"What the surfers see from the break is the jail of the island . The rehab centre is right behind it. Can't really see it from the waves. It is not a high security prison, but it is monitored with guards in all its area. From our surf house you are allowed to walk on the border reef of the jail to reach the break (most of the time they allow only people who are caring a surfboard). The locals made a path for the surfers so that they wont walk the wrong way. Most of the guards are friendly, they want just to be sure that they can keep their area safe and secure. Nothing against surfers.
Deal, New Jersey. "This day I ran down to the ocean when I saw the waist high shorebreak coming through. This was probably the second or third wave I shot right when I got it. It was a fun session, but nothing special."© 2013 Connor Haplin
La Graviere, France. "I've travelled to France to take photos of the QuikPro and RoxyPro. When I shot this, the forecast said 4-6 feet of swell which is awesome for La Graviere. Also the tide was coming back up at this time, giving the waves some more power. I was hoping that lots of the RoxyPro girls would be there, but I didn't see many of them. Luckily I spotted Bianca (Buitendag) and a few more. The swell wasn't very consistent, and the surfers found it hard to do much. In this shot Bianca beat the guys to the take-off, and got off to a good start, but she soon realized the wave would close, and she ejected, quite gracefully too. I used my infra-red converted camera here. It gives quite a nice and dramatic contrast in these kinds of light conditions."© 2013 Mattias Hammar
Le Penon, France. "This was taken late on the first day of the Roxy Pro. The tide was high and the swell offered really nice rights. As the sun got lower, I positioned myself to hopefully get the surfers between me and the sun. Coco was really nice to grant my wish, and gave me a backlit spray on a decent size wave."© 2013 Mattias Hammar
Lacerations, Nusa Lembongan. Balinese surfer, Made Artah duck diving at one of Indonesia's most treacherous reefs.© 2013 Nobu Fuku
Sultans, Maldives. "After three windy weeks on the Maldivian breaks, finally glassy days arrived. Perfect conditions, sunny, with blue skies covering our heads. Couldn't wait to get my housing set up and shoot in such clear waters. A swimming pool wouldn't be as clear I guess. I spent more time taking shots underwater than on the surface. Simply irresistible! I noticed that I was not alone under the waves. A Giant Trevally, a couple of Black Tip sharks, lots of species of smaller fish, and that one friendly turtle who was feeding from the reef, and who was not afraid of my presence at all. She "posed " for me for a few shots. On this one in particular I got really lucky. I was waiting for an underwater take-off shot, and there she swam perfectly at the right spot at the right time, giving the impression to be interested on the fins of the board cutting the water. Couldn't ask for more from Mother Nature that day! Blessed."© 2013 Giorgio Rollo
Wave watching turtles, drug rehabilitation centres and pumping UK beachbreaks, the top photos of September have captured a multiplicity of subjects. Here are the stories behind them, from the mouths of those who pressed the shutter release button.